John Kuzmich Jr.


Oral History Information

John Kuzmich, Jr. is a pioneering figure in the marching band movement and has left an indelible mark on both high school and college-level bands. A proud alumnus of Michigan State University, his own band made history marching in the Rose Bowl in 1959. John’s leadership extended beyond the United States, as his bands toured Europe triumphantly, clinching victories in various competitions across multiple countries. As a jazz educator, he's witnessed firsthand the transformative power of music education, advocating for specialized programs to nurture budding musicians. Over twenty years he served as the senior editor for the NAJE/IAJE's Jazz Educators JournalThe Instrumentalist and the American Suzuki Journal by the Suzuki Association of the Americas. John has championed computer-assisted instruction and was an early adopter of MIDI technology. His commitment to advancing music education led him to collaborate with Lee Bash in the 1990s, presenting marketing strategies to enhance music education at NAMM. A stalwart supporter of the National Association of Jazz Music Educators, John continues to inspire generations of musicians and educators alike with his passion and dedication.